Three-dimensional billboards will be set up in the West Kootenay Boundary region in the hopes of attracting the eyeballs of tourists and visitors.
Kelowna-based advertising company Mountain Media – that owns licence to visitor information signs throughout the West Kootenays and Boundary area – has enlisted the services of Montreal artist Jean Louis Rheault, who will design geo-pictorial maps of the region with a 3-D feel.
“Instead of putting up what we would call a stick map, it’s going to be a large pictorial map. (It’s) basically a something that presents an area like an oblique point, a bird’s eye view of the area,” explains Rheault.
Rheault, who will draw the map electronically on a graphic tablet, says that pictorial maps zero in on the specifics of an area and the areas that visitors really want to see.
“It does it through an interplay of scale so that something like Grand Forks, you’ll see the actual layout of Grand Forks. The main landmarks are identified, things like the Doukhobor museum, things like that,” says Rheault.
“Normally, you wouldn’t be able to see that amount of detail on a map that shows a whole big area, like the Boundary and West Kootenays, so that’s what makes it special – you’re able to get an idea of what the whole area looks like and at the same time, see details.”
Mountain Media sales consultant Sandra Barron says that currently there are six billboards in the area – three in the Boundary country, one at Rock Creek at the junction, one halfway to Christina Lake at the side of the road and one right past the Cascade border crossing.
There are also three in the area considered the West Kootenays – Nancy Greene junction, the Rossland Museum and Meadows junction, which is at the bottom of the Bombay Summit.
“It’s meant to supply visitors with information and we try to catch them as they’re coming in from the Okanagan and Vancouver, from Alberta and we have heavy emphasis on people that are coming up from the south,” Barron says, also saying that the current billboards are going to be taken down and will be replaced with Rheault’s panoramic, 3-D maps.
“I think it’s really going to be a benefit to the entire region because it’s going to encourage people to stay and explore a little bit more,” Barron says.
“Rather than just passing through on (Highway) 3, they can stop and look at the sign and say, ‘OK, let’s go spend the day in Grand Forks. Let’s go take a trip to Castlegar and come back down around Rossland and back into Christina Lake.’”
There will also be advertising opportunities for businesses in the area, according to the Mountain Media sales consultant. Both Ted Morris and she are going around confirming 80 participants, who will get their businesses drawn into the artwork.
“It’s the participants and the businesses that get drawn on the map, that basically make up the contents of the map,” says Barron.
The maps are expected to go up next June and interested businesses in the West Kootenays can contact Barron at 250-666-0436 while those in the Boundary area can call Morris at 250-442-9855.
They can also email email@example.com.